I drove by my grammar school the other night and had a flashback to second grade (note: I went to an all hearing school and was the only student who wore hearing aids). I remember my dad and I met with my second grade teacher, Ms. Reiser, before school on the first day of the school year. My mom and dad had packed a plastic baggie with batteries, back-up hearing aids, and an air-puff tool (not sure what it is called!). My dad and Ms. Reiser wanted to make sure I knew to go to her should I have problems with my hearing aids. I remember feeling shy and embarassed as my dad gave Ms. Reiser the bag of goodies.
Another flashback I had was around the same time in my life (second or third grade) and I was waiting in line to go to the bathroom with other kids in our class. I remember someone behind me was curious about my hearing aids. He kept touching one of my aids. Upon his touch, I shooke my head and turning away. I looked on the floor or moved somewhere else in line.
These memories reveal how I was really insecure about my hearing impairment at an early age. Although my mom used to to tell me my hearing aids were like glasses, clearly I didn't feel that way. I didn't like being the odd one out wearing instruments that no one else wore. I certainly didn't feel cool having hearing aids -- never decorated them or wore them in a color other than tan.
I'm going to make a list of things that were a challenge for me as a result of my impariment (or as a result of my being insecure about my hearing impairement). This will be my next post.